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Carbon Ion Implanted Silicon for Schottky Light-Emitting Diodes



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Research in the field of Photonics is in part, directed at the application of light-emitting materials based on silicon platforms. In this work silicon wafers are modified by carbon ion implantation to incorporate silicon carbide, a known light-emitting material. Ion beam synthesis treatments are applied with implant energy of 20 keV, and ion fluences of 3, 5 and 10 × 10¹⁶ ions/cm² at both ambient temperature and high temperature (400 °C). The samples are annealed at 1000 °C, after implantation. The carbon ion implanted silicon is characterized using Raman and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopic techniques, grazing-incidence X-ray diffraction, transmission electron microscopy and electron energy loss spectroscopy. The materials are observed to have a multilayer structure, where the ambient temperature implanted materials have an amorphous silicon layer, and an amorphous silicon layer with carbon-rich, nanoscale inclusions. The high temperature implanted materials have the same layers, with an additional polycrystalline Si layer at the interface between the implanted layer and the target substrate and the amorphous Si layer with SiC inclusions is reduced in thickness compared to the ambient temperature samples. The carbon-rich inclusions are confirmed to be SiC, with no evidence of carbon clusters in the materials observed using Raman spectroscopy. The carbon ion-implanted material is used to fabricate Schottky diodes having a semitransparent gold contact at the implanted surface, and an aluminum contact on the opposite side. The diodes are tested using current-voltage measurements between -12 and +15 V. No reverse breakdown is observed for any of the diodes. The turn-on voltages for the ambient temperature implanted samples are 2.6±0.1 V, 2.8±0.6 V and 3.9±0.1 V for the 3, 5 and 10 × 10¹⁶ ions/cm² samples, respectively. For the high temperature implanted samples, the turn-on voltages are 3.2±0.1 V, 2.7±0.1 V, and 2.9±0.4 V for the implanted samples with same fluences. The diode curves are modeled using the Shockley equation, and estimates are made of the ideality factor of the diodes. These are 188±16, 224.5±5.8, and 185.4±9.2 for the ambient temperature samples, and 163.6±6.3, 124.3±5.3, and 333±12 for the high temperature samples. The high ideality factor is associated with the native oxide layer on the silicon substrate and with the non-uniform, defect-rich implanted region of the carbon ion implanted silicon. Red-orange visible light emission from the diodes is observed with voltage greater than the turn-on voltage applied across the diodes. The luminescence for the ambient temperature samples is attributed to porous silicon, and amorphous silicon. The high temperature implanted samples show luminescence associated with porous silicon, nanocrystalline silicon carbide, and defects in silicon related to ion implantation. The luminescent intensity observed for the ambient temperature samples is higher than for the high temperature samples. The dominant luminescence feature in the carbon ion-implanted silicon material is porous silicon, which is described by quantum confinement of excitons in silicon.



Ion implantation, Silicon, Photonics, FTIR, Raman, X-Ray Diffraction, Transmission Electron Microscopy, Electroluminesence, Light-emitting diode, I-V curve, Annealing



Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)


Physics and Engineering Physics




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